Calgary, AB – Trico Centre for Family Wellness, Saying hello to REALice and goodbye to hot water resurfacing

Calgary, AB – Trico Centre for Family Wellness, Saying hello to REALice and goodbye to hot water resurfacing

May 1, 2017 – Trico Centre for Family Wellness (Calgary, AB), a busy year-round multi-use recreation facility with twin NHL-sized ice rinks, has purchased and installed a REALice system to resurface their ice with unheated water. This community-owned non-profit takes pride in operating their facility in a sustainable manner and the switch to REALice is another way they will achieve their sustainability goals.

Trico Centre, in the Willow Park neighbourhood in Calgary’s South East, is doing this by no longer needing to heat up the resurfacing water to 160°F — the temperature they were heating their water to before REALice was installed. Now, with one REALice system to service both rinks, they’re able to use cold water and reclaim heated water for resurfacing that ranges from 50°- 80°F.

The REALice system was installed in March 2017, and according to Ryan Matity, Trico Centre’s Facility Operations Manager, they immediately saw changes to the way the ice froze, and the hardness and bond of the application.

Making ice that’s fast — and looks good too!
“It is not just the proposed energy savings that impressed us,” says Matity. “We have also seen a dramatic increase in the quality of the ice. It looks fantastic, and it feels fast — faster than before.”

Florian Gabriel, Managing Director of SWiCH Services Inc., the distributor of Swedish-manufactured REALice in Canada, says Trico Centre’s long-term savings will be impressive.

“According to our Rink Saving calculations, Trico Centre will save over 30,000m3 in natural gas and over 150,000 kWh of electricity each year by using REALice-treated cold water instead of hot water for resurfacing,” Gabriel says. “They’ll save by not heating the water anymore. And, they’ll save by being able to increase the temperature of the ice.”

Raising the brine temperature

Ryan Matity reports, The Trico Centre’s operations team has already been able to increase their brine temperature by 3°F — up to 22°F from 19°F — and they are still adjusting the temperature!

The Trico Centre’s operations team started up the ice plant to 22°F and carried all the way through ice making process. Once fully installed, they drove out onto the ice with their ice re-surfacer expecting pops or cracks, and to their surprise they experienced nothing of the sort.  The ice was a very hard product even 3°F higher than their normal.